Empowering Health Care Consumers

Project Title

Improving Access to and Use of Patient Visit Notes

Grant Amount


Priority Area

Empowering Health Care Consumers

Date Awarded

April 26, 2023


Hudson Valley




In Progress



Shared visit notes, often referred to as open notes, are an important way to help consumers become active participants in their own care.

When patients have access to their own visit notes written by health care providers, they better remember and act on information discussed during visits, improve communication with their health care team, and better manage their health. The 21st Century Cures Act, a recent federal mandate, requires health care providers to make clinical notes available to patients electronically and at no charge. However, the level of compliance and, most importantly, the proactive use of open notes to improve care vary among health systems. In 2022, NYHealth issued a Request for Proposals (RFP), “From Good to Great: Improving Access to and Use of Patient Visit Notes in Non-Hospital Systems,” to support non-hospital systems across New York State in sharing open notes in compliance with recent federal rules and using open notes to more meaningfully engage patients. In 2023, NYHealth awarded Doctors United a grant to participate in this initiative.

Doctors United is a multi-specialty physician practice in the Bronx and Westchester County that provides diagnostic, treatment, and pain management services across five sites. Under this grant, Doctors United will continue to implement and improve the use of shared notes within its system and participate in a technical assistance and peer-learning network. It will also create bilingual patient education materials—including step-by-step guides on how patients can access notes—and support education with outreach and navigation efforts.

See a full list of grantees participating in this initiative.